Doncaster among worst places in UK for number of houses built in flood zones

Flooding in Toll Bar in 2007.
Flooding in Toll Bar in 2007.

Doncaster is among the worst places in Britain for the number of houses built in flood risk areas.

New research has revealed that hundreds of homes in the region are considered at risk - with Doncaster considered the tenth most at risk spot in the UK.

The area was badly hit by flooding in 2007 when Toll Bar, Bentley and many other areas of the town were engulfed in deep floods which caused millions of pounds worth of damage.

Now leading flood risk campaigners have urged the Government to toughen up on building regulations to protect properties built in flood risk zones.

Mary Dhonau, chief executive of the Know Your Flood Risk campaign has wants flood resilient measures automatically included in all new-build properties that are deemed to be within areas at danger from flooding.

Following the Environment, Food and Rural Affairs Committee's formal response on what it calls a "disjointed flood management system", Mrs Dhonau said: "I think it is now a matter of urgency that the Government toughens up on its planning and building regulation processes to make sure that any new builds located in 'at risk' areas automatically include measures to make the property flood resilient.

"My concern is that Flood Re (a flood re-insurance scheme for homeowners) does not cover new build properties and therefore we must stop building houses that are simply not covered or prepared for future flood event.

"It is not fair on the future generations who will have to deal with the dreadful aftermath that flood waters bring."

The Know Your Flood Risk campaign took flood risk data from the Environment Agency and planning application data to determine the percentage of planning applications for new build properties (residential and commercial) that are deemed to be within a flood zone.

Between September 2015 and September 2016, 22% of new build planning applications in Doncaster were in an area deemed to be at risk of flooding.

Hull was considered the worst place in the country, with 91% followed by Thurrock and Newport in Wales.

Added Mrs Dhonau: "Having reviewed the data analysis, it is clear that there are hundreds of applications submitted each year that fall in to a designated flood risk zone according to the Environment Agency.

"These stats don't even take into account groundwater or surface water risks and so I fear the volume is greater still. I therefore agree with Efra's call to Government to create far stronger planning rules, and penalties for those that breach them, to ensure future communities are not blighted by today's failure to act."

The Know Your Flood Risk Campaign's mission is to raise awareness of the risk of flooding from all sources.

It helps people find out the flood risk related to their current or future home and provides access to free-to-download information guides and a smartphone app.

To download a free copy of the Homeowners' Guide to Flood Resilience or the new supplement for businesses, visit www.knowyourfloodrisk.co.uk. For more information, follow the Know